Re: Aquatic Plants Digest V2 #354

> From: Pat Bowerman <bowerman at specent_com>
> Recently, I decided to try my hand at DIY T-8 lighting. Here's my story.
> I went to my local Grainger outlet, and picked up an electronic ballast
> and 2 4100k T-8 bulbs. (they were out of 5000k and I didn't want to wait
> for the order. I got the thing wired up to an El Cheapo "Lights of
> America" 4' shop light fixture that I already had laying around. I had a
> terrible time trying to get the bulbs to make a good connection with the
> fixture. They kept going out, flickering, and sometimes shorting out.
> (which produced a nasty electrical smell) This wasn't working, so I went
> to my local Wally-world and picked up another El Cheapo shop light. I
> bought the same brand and...surprise, I got the same results. No matter
> how much I tinker with this fixture it just won't work. If I get one
> bulb to light, the other one won't. If, by some miracle, I get both
> bulbs to light, then the least jar will cause one or both to quit. I
> just don't trust these lights. The endcaps seem to be awful. I now plan
> on going back to Grainger, and buying a couple of sets of endcaps. Just
> thought I'd share this with the list.
Didn't the "Lights of America" (LOA) already came with a ballast
inside the assembly?  Why is the electronic ballast needed then?  I've
got the bulbs replaced with Vitalites.  Are Vitalites T-8 bulbs?  I
have two of the LOAs screwed to my hood with 4 vitalites and the
plants seems to be doing well with CO2 and micronutrients dosing on a
12 hour lighting cycle.  Only thing that didn't grow well is an Onion
plant which I suspect is not a true aquatic anyway.  The rest, swords,
aponogetons, cabomba, ludwigia etc.  are lush.